Budget Rental Cars is dead to me.

Budget Rental Cars is dead to me. I will never rent from them again.  Our relationship future ended when they delivered me the ultimate car rental indignity this evening by putting me in a mini-van.

Online, I rented the most economic little car they had.  When I arrived at the counter she was ready to hand me the keys to a Volkswagon Jetta and then said, “Oh, no I can’t give you that car.  That was already rented to someone else. I will have to either give you a mini-van or you will have to pay more and move into another car.”

When my major moan and exclamation, “You’re killing me here!” was met with a blank stare by the agent, I knew my angst was wasted on a young person who saw me as an old person who should be content with a mini-van.  I realized quickly that I was either going to have to take the mini-van, pay more to Budget for another car, or go out amongst the other rental car desks and take my chances.  In retrospect, I probably should have chosen one of those other options, but I was tired and there was a line behind me and only one Budget agent – so I took the keys begrudgingly even after she told me that the full take of gas cost was double that of my original rental.  Needless to say, I did not pre-pay the gas – indeed, when she asked me whether I wanted that option my response was a fairly emphatic, “That is not happening!”

I was not happy as I trudged out to the mini-van. I wondered how it had come to this.  I am sure it all started when I decided to buy a grown-up car.  I sealed my fate.  Now I have gone from a sassy, hip glamma in a sporty car to an old grandma in a rented mini-van.

Some might say this is the cycle of life – that I am fighting a battle I cannot win.  To that I say – baloney!  Well, truthfully, I said something else, but I chose to keep it clean.

I do not want to conform to this notion that what I drive shouldn’t matter.  I do not care how comfortable or how many amenities a mini-van has, I do not want to drive one.  I have avoided one all my life only to arrive at the Budget Car Rental desk to be dealt this hand.

This was because I was trying to save money.  I almost always rent from Enterprise, but Budget’s price was so much lower online that I went with them.  Lesson learned.  You get what you pay for and I got a mini-van.  Never again.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to go out and buy a pair of big dark glasses and a floppy hat.  And yes, I am aware that with these items and the extra gas cost I will end up spending more when the whole decisionmaking process at the outset was based on paying less.  Never fear, I realize that the badge of my stupidity is the big blue mini-van I will be driving the next few days.  Lesson learned.

Day one thousand three hundred and sixty-eight of the new forty – obla di obla da

Ms. C

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About Ms. C

I teach at NDSU...but I remain a student of life with all the enthusiasm that entails. My favorite saying is, "Sometimes you have to take the leap and build your wings on the way down." In the new forty that is what I am doing...building my wings.
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2 Responses to Budget Rental Cars is dead to me.

  1. erik says:

    Sorry but you will not really use anymore gas in the mini-van as the Jetta. She upgraded you.

  2. tim haering says:

    I like mini-vans, Ms. C. But Budget did you wrong trying to make you pay for THEIR mistake. I bet if you fussed directly to corporate, you’d get a free rental out of it. They have grease for squeaky wheels, I’m sure. If you lack the time to pursue justice, hire Cheyenne to prosecute your refund case. Good exercise for her.

    I think erik’s right about the fuel efficiency. But I think you’re more worried about the ‘soccer mom’ stereotype than MPGs. Floppy hat and sunglasses are a good call. KInda funny image tho.

    Meanwhile, here’s a Beatle song you can sing: “How can you laugh, when ya know I’m down?” While live goes on, Molly Jones.

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